Projects per year
I work on the contested character of environmental and energy policy and politics. This is with a particular focus on the local politics of energy generation and consumption, decarbonisation and climate action. This mostly fits into the three interrelated themes listed below.
These different threads of work have all led to my forthcoming book A Just Energy Transition published in July 2023. This book explores how localised, democratic and place-based approaches might allow for more equitable energy transitions and climate action.
Just transitions - exploring how environmental and energy policy must be equitable and inclusive. Whilst there is an urgency around discussing and mitigating climate change, it is important to ensure that nobody is excluded from or unsupported by decarbonisation. This work includes research into climate resilience, local environmental voices, and the use of digital technologies in managing household energy demand.
This stems from previous work, including my PhD research, into the contentious politics of hydropower, with a focus on the Brazilian Amazon region. This includes research into how hydroelectric dams can transform a waterscape and how movements against them challenge dominant understandings of hydropower as a ‘green’ energy source that has a role in energy transitions.
Right-wing populism, the environment, and energy transitions - detailing how right-wing populist politicians and movements treat climate change and environmental issues in different ways. This currently includes research into right-wing populists' treatment of net-zero agendas and decarbonisation in the UK.
Workers and work in energy transitions – tracing how energy transitions will restructure regional economies and patterns of employment. This includes current work, in the early stages, exploring ‘stranded communities’, or those regions dependent on fossil fuel work who are at risk of being cut adrift in a low-carbon future. This has also involved discussions of how good ‘green jobs’ actually are and how workers might influence future patterns of change.
In addition to these three core themes of work, I have previously explored and written about cryptocurrency ‘mining’, data centres, the popularity of Bitcoin, the aviation sector, and climate anxiety in young people.
In addition to these routes of research, I am the Co-Lead of the Low Carbon Energy theme at the Cabot Institute for the Environment (alongside Sam Williamson and Tom Scott) and a member of the Bristol Advisory Committee on Climate Change, as well as sitting on Steering Committees for the Bristol Inclusive Economy Initiative and the Environmental Change group of the Cabot Institute for the Environment.
Structured keywords and research groupings
- Global Political Economy
- Cabot Institute Low Carbon Energy Research
- Cabot Institute Water Research
- Cabot Institute Environmental Change Research
- Digital Societies
- Environmental Politics
- Energy Politics
- Digital technologies
- Environmental Justice
- Discourse Analysis
- Just transition
- Green New Deal
- Data Centres
- Energy Justice
- Net Zero
- 1 Similar Profiles
Collaborations and top research areas from the last five years
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1/10/23 → 31/03/25
25/04/22 → 24/10/24
“Individual actions add up: Finding inspiration in everyday citizen actions to address inequalities in post-pandemic climate and nature emergency responses”
Atkins, E., Townsend, I. & Yelland, S.
8/03/21 → 31/07/21
Atkins, E., 1 Jul 2023, Bristol University Press.
Research output: Book/Report › Authored book
From individuals to collectives in energy systems — A social practice, identity and rhythm inspired lensOliveira, S., Chatzimichali, A., Atkins, E., Badarnah, L. & Bagheri Moghaddam, F., 1 Nov 2023, In: Energy Research and Social Science. 105, 103279.
Research output: Contribution to journal › Article (Academic Journal) › peer-reviewOpen Access
Methodological lessons for negotiating power, political capabilities, and resilience in research on climate change responsesTschakert, P., Atkins, E., Parsons, M., Garcia, A., Henrique, K. P., Godden, N., Gonda, N., Sallu, S., Steen, K. & Ziervogel, G., 1 May 2023, (E-pub ahead of print) In: World Development. 167, 106247.
Research output: Contribution to journal › Article (Academic Journal) › peer-review1 Citation (Scopus)
Atkins, E., 25 Sept 2018
Student thesis: Doctoral Thesis › Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)File